The 50th Annual Emmy Awards By Bridget King, Situate, MA The airplane has just taken off. It's now 9: 30 a.m., but it's 12: 30 p.m. in Boston. I'm on my way home from what has been the best day of my life. Twelve hours earlier, I was surrounded by glamorous and handsome television actors at the fiftieth annual Emmy awards in Los Angeles. Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined being so close to the stars whom I had loved from afar! My Uncle Jim had called five days earlier to ask if I would like to accompany him to the ceremony. I remember thinking, Are you serious? I was stunned but excited beyond belief because I would see in person those I had idolized in magazines and watched on TV.My uncle met me at the airport. Two hours later, we were stepping into our limousine. I think I was in shock; I felt like I was in a dream. Then I remember seeing crowds of people lining the streets and screaming, waiting to catch a glimpse of their favorite stars. After the limo pulled up to the curb, our driver opened the door and I saw the long red carpet. There were mobs of people. We joined the crowd of people waiting in line. I was standing side by side with David Hyde Pierce, Leah Thompson and others. Leah Thompson was pushing forward and elbowed me. I think she said, "Excuse me," but I wasn't sure. I also saw Jenna Elfman, Anne Heche, Ellen Degeneres, Roma Downey, Conan O'Brien, Jane Seymour, James VanDer Beek, Christine Lahti, Michael Richards and even Mary Tyler Moore. They looked like everyone else, except I had seen and read about them in magazines.Cameras were everywhere. Many stars were not moving toward the entrance but instead toward the cameras and interviewers. It amazed me that they were anxious to get on TV. At one time, I looked up and I was right next to Conan O'Brien. Boy, is he tall! Eventually we got to our seats and enjoyed the four-hour extravaganza. I was back in dreamland, watching my favorite stars on stage (including Michael J. Fox, Dick Van Dyke and Katie Holmes). When the show ended, we herded together with the stars into the next room where we were seated for a delicious meal. I remember seeing lots of famous Emmy winners proudly showing off their awards. Camryn Manhein, (from "The Practice") couldn't sit still; she kept jumping up, showing off her statue.After dinner, we called for our limo, but the evening wasn't over. We decided to go to the HBO party because HBO had won a lot of Emmys and we thought it would be fun. We weren't disappointed. When we walked in, the first people we saw were Tom Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson. I remember thinking his face was rounder in real life. During the HBO party, we watched the time-delayed Emmy Show on the restaurant monitors. We watched Tom Hanks laugh at himself and saw the whole cast of "Stomp" smoke cigars as they watched themselves on TV. They were just people when I was standing next to them, but they're stars on TV.It was thrilling to see my favorite stars up close and personal. But it was also weird to realize that they were just people too - some nice and some rude. I will still read about them in my favorite magazines and watch them on TV and in movies. I will still think how beautiful, handsome and talented they are. But now I also know they are people, too. Most have worked hard for what they've achieved. I think this experience has changed my life. I believe that any ordinary person, if they work hard, can achieve fame or fortune if that's what they want. I saw that proven at the Emmys and I'll never forget it! c
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.